Willcombe Children Centre

A technically challenging project to provide a new Children Centre within a courtyard enclosed on three sides at the rear of a long established junior school in Tiverton.

The courtyard was bounded by the school building with each side having a different storey and roof height. The courtyard was heavily populated with visible and concealed services preventing traditional foundation.

The solution was a steel lattice roof structure supported on steel posts sat on pad foundations in the spaces between the existing services. The sinusoidal roof connects to only one of the three bounding builidngs and oversails the other two with weather proofing provided by windows which hang off the roof, having only a waterproofing contact with the lower structures.

Introduction of the Children Centre changed the circulation routes through the original building, necessitated the provision of new ventilation and natural lighting to adjacent space and increased vehicle and cycle parking provision.

The original courtyard.


Outline design drawings.

The principle approach.

The budget was reduced part way through the project which prohibited the use of the intended colours for the new facade.

Group space

An essential element of the project was that the structure should wherever practical be visible so that building users could enage with the structure and concepts for themselves.

The remodelled school administration centre naturally illuminated and ventilated by means of sun pipes.